Author Topic: Attending Meetings Just for the Food  (Read 4928 times)

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mbbored

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #15 on: October 13, 2012, 08:46:17 PM »
I thought of this yesterday when I attended a lecture given by a Nobel laureate and afterwards there was a lunch reception for the attendees. Except when we stepped into the reception area, half the sandwiches and all of the cookies were already gone and there was a whole pack of students walking out with tupperware in their hands stuffed with food.

Shopaholic

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #16 on: October 14, 2012, 02:43:28 AM »
I thought of this yesterday when I attended a lecture given by a Nobel laureate and afterwards there was a lunch reception for the attendees. Except when we stepped into the reception area, half the sandwiches and all of the cookies were already gone and there was a whole pack of students walking out with tupperware in their hands stuffed with food.

Wow... that is just a new level of rudeness! How desperate are these students?

At my university there is usually a monitor left with the food - either an organizer or someone from the catering to prevent uninvited people taking food. Uninvited people helping themselves to a sandwich or a brownie are common enough, but I have yet to see someone come with Tupperware!!!

Sharnita

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #17 on: October 14, 2012, 06:36:26 AM »
It isn't just students - when we planned events at school we wanted parents to come to one of the strategies was to offer food.  One would think that they would be motivated since it was bout their children's education but food was usually the bigger draw - and we did try to serve it toward the end.

kckgirl

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #18 on: October 14, 2012, 07:20:46 AM »
Also, it was clear when the line formed that there were quite a few people and not quite enough food. Nevertheless, quite a few people took two slices. Is this rude?

You should probably not offer pizza if you cannot afford to have enough. It is not unreasonable or unexpected to take two slices at lunchtime. Brown bag meetings or juice/coffee meetings sound more like your budget can handle.
Maryland

camlan

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #19 on: October 14, 2012, 09:28:11 AM »
I don't get the "starving students" thing.  Why would graduate students be starving?  Aren't most universities that have graduate programs in large enough cities that there are food pantries or church charities that give away food? 

I don't think that just because they are students they should be given a pass.  If I went to the golf club and attended the ladies league meeting (knowing that I was not going to join) just for the free food I believe most people here would say I was rude.  Why is it different for students?

Many universities in the US are located in rural areas. One that I attended was in a very small town that had created zoning rules to prevent the typical "college town" from growing up around the university. There were no grocery stores within walking distance of the campus, nor food pantries. And many grad students can't afford cars. The nearest food pantry that I knew of (because my church contributed to it), was in the next town over, 15 miles down a long, narrow country road. No public transportation, either.

And many of the grad students I knew could afford to buy food. But they'd see a free meal offered by a club as a way of saving money on one meal, either extending their food budget, or allowing them to buy something else. They weren't literally "starving," but they didn't have much extra cash, either.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


mbbored

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #20 on: October 14, 2012, 11:53:57 AM »
I thought of this yesterday when I attended a lecture given by a Nobel laureate and afterwards there was a lunch reception for the attendees. Except when we stepped into the reception area, half the sandwiches and all of the cookies were already gone and there was a whole pack of students walking out with tupperware in their hands stuffed with food.

Wow... that is just a new level of rudeness! How desperate are these students?

At my university there is usually a monitor left with the food - either an organizer or someone from the catering to prevent uninvited people taking food. Uninvited people helping themselves to a sandwich or a brownie are common enough, but I have yet to see someone come with Tupperware!!!

According to the woman from the catering service, they lied and said they had attended the lecture.

This event was held on the vet school campus, where almost every week corporations hold catered lunches for vet students, hoping to convince them their pharmaceutical company, pet food, or training services are the best. They've become so accustomed to this that they bring tupperware daily just in case. However, they deserve food from all events since it's held in "their" building. Most receptions have to arrange for bouncers, but apparently the catering service was not prepared.

SleepyKitty

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #21 on: October 14, 2012, 01:42:57 PM »
On my campus, it's not rude to attend meetings just for the food. The food is there, as others have noted, to attract people to come. It's considered a fair trade - you show up for the meeting, whether or not you have an interest, we give you pizza. The hope if that if six students come just for the free pizza, one or two may end up actually interested.

As for the "starving students" trope, I think it's a kind of hyperbole that's just become accepted. Grad students have notoriously tight budgets, yes, but I've never known one who couldn't afford food. Maybe their food was Ramen, but they had it. But again, at my uni, this is deliberately played upon to attract people to meetings. Most meetings on my campus are advertised as: FREE PIZZA and a discussion about the history program. So, I don't see anything rude about showing up just for food, although it is rude to leave halfway through.

miranova

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #22 on: October 14, 2012, 05:16:58 PM »
On my campus, it's not rude to attend meetings just for the food. The food is there, as others have noted, to attract people to come. It's considered a fair trade - you show up for the meeting, whether or not you have an interest, we give you pizza. The hope if that if six students come just for the free pizza, one or two may end up actually interested.


If this is the situation, that the food is offered for the specific purpose of enticing people to come hear a "sales pitch" for the organization,  then I'm ok with people coming for the food, but yes, they should stay for the "pitch".  After all, that was the deal! 

However if food is being offered simply becuase it's lunchtime and more of a convenience to people already in the club or who actually have a real interest in the club, then I think it's totally rude to come to the meeting KNOWING you have zero interest in it just for a couple slices of pizza.  There are a lot of broke people in the world, that doesn't give anyone an excuse to crash someone else's meeting and take food from other broke people's mouths.

I really can't imagine doing this.  Oh look, the underwater baskets weaving society is having pizza at their meeting!  I have no interest whatsoever in that and never will but I'm hungry so I think I'll go?  I just don't see that as polite or considerate at all. 

NyaChan

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #23 on: October 14, 2012, 05:27:25 PM »
The thing is, when the food is served only for the convenience of having food at a 12 pm lunch-time meeting, it is not advertised as (example taken from my school poster board)  "GROUP EVENT: Tagline Denoting Subject Matter.  Join us for free pizza in the Commons at 12 pm!"   Instead, they put:  "Moot Court Board Meeting for all Board and Team Members at 6 pm in Room X.  Pizza will be served." 

Aria

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Re: Attending Meetings Just for the Food
« Reply #24 on: October 15, 2012, 01:09:13 PM »
Also, it was clear when the line formed that there were quite a few people and not quite enough food. Nevertheless, quite a few people took two slices. Is this rude?

You should probably not offer pizza if you cannot afford to have enough. It is not unreasonable or unexpected to take two slices at lunchtime. Brown bag meetings or juice/coffee meetings sound more like your budget can handle.

I agree that under normal circumstances, it's not unreasonable at all to take two slices of pizza. I mentioned it to point out that people took two slices even when it was clear that there might not be enough to go around. In a situation like that, I was wondering if it was rude to take two slices (a normal amount), or if it would be more proper only to take one piece and then go back for seconds after everyone got some. (Of course, in the latter case, the people at the end of the line might just take two pieces, figuring that the earlier people didn't want any more.)